Doris Leeper was a visionary artist and environmentalist. She was instrumental in the creation of the Canaveral National Seashore, established Atlantic Center for the Arts in New Smyrna, and was a celebrated sculptor and painter. Doris Leeper died in 2000, one year after being inducted into the Florida Artists Hall of Fame.
Ever since 16th century Spanish explorers realized that Florida was a large peninsula, people have dreamed of finding or creating a “shortcut” linking the Atlantic Ocean to the Gulf of Mexico.
By the early 19th century, a series of politicians and businessmen envisioned cutting a canal from one side of Florida to the other, creating a direct path for commercial boat traffic across the top of the peninsula.
When most people think of Florida’s natural environment, an explosion of color comes to mind. We imagine multiple shades of green in a Florida swamp, bright red Poinciana trees, and the turquoise waters of the Gulf Coast. We picture the oranges, purples, pinks, and blues of the Florida sky.
The black and white photographs of Clyde Butcher allow us to look at the natural Florida in a different way.
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